Category Archives: How to Ski in Control

Ski Training – do it in your bedroom

Ski Training and how you can use your bedroom full-length mirror to enhance your skiing.

Do just three a week of my ten-minute sessions with your full length mirror and you’ll transform your skiing next season

Practice does not make perfect. Not automatically anyway: it might do but more than likely won’t. What practice does is to make permanent, no matter what you practice or how you practice it. So it can do more harm than good if you are not careful. As John Shedden observed, “Humans get good at what they do”. So be careful what you do.

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Ski instruction - hands forward, knees bent.

Ski technique: Your hands are more important than you think.

My ski coaching sometimes surprises when I pay so much heed to skiers’ hands regarding ski technique. Surely, skiing is about your feet?  Well it is, but it’s about a lot more. Glen Plake one of the world’s greatest extreme skiers told one group that the instant he couldn’t see his hands – it was too late.   But the instruction to “Carry your hands forward”  is simply awful.  It creates poor ski technique. Here’s why ..  Continue reading

Ski Instruction tells you the wrong things.

Ski tows push.

Simon Trueman, the Waggoner at “The Victorian Farm” demonstrating an important skiing principle.

In most Ski Schools the Ski instruction uses bad language.  I don’t mean swearing, I mean they describe very badly what you need to do to improve your skiing.

Words are the keystrokes with which we programme our minds.  Use an incorrect or inappropriate word to describe something and you put the wrong idea, an incorrect understanding, into peoples’ minds.

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Improve your ski learning, keep to the essentials

Take them, or they won't work.

To improve your ski learning keep taking the tablets: they don’t work if you don’t take them.

To improve your ski learning– or indeed to improve skill with any technique or group of techniques, somewhat resembles looking after your health.

Your doctor diagnoses some ailment or other.  Next she prescribes a treatment that you need to keep applying.  She gives you the medication, and off you go.

You are keen to make things better, so you apply the medication regime, and sure enough things begin to improve.  They continue to improve right up to the point where you are no longer aware of the symptoms that drove you to her in the first place.  So it is with your skiing skill. Continue reading

Skiing in Control. Benefits of an open mind

Open-mindedness.

open-minded-symbol-photo-4

Ordinary people do amazing things when they don’t know they can’t. I looked up “open-mindedness” in the Thesaurus and it came up with Acceptance,  Interest,  Observance,  Receptiveness and Understanding.  All of which, it seems to me, are pretty handy when you want to develop more skilful skiing.  More of which, below the fold here – Continue reading

Ski schools, why don’t they work better?

SKI SCHOOLS. WHY DON’T THEY WORK BETTER?

Perhaps because they look like this.  OK for kids, just havin’ fun.  Not much more.

Kids-Ski-School-on-the-Wiedersbergerhorn-cAlpbachtal-Seenland-Tourismu...

“Change? Change? Who wants change, things are bad enough already !”  So said Lord Salisbury.

The biggest change that comes about, and by a country mile the one that matters most, when skiers first come on one my courses, is the change in belief about what may be possible. What may be possible for them! Continue reading

Skilful skiing requires experiment

Every experiment is a good experiment. Except one. That is the one the outcome of which you do not ascertain. That experiment is useless.

An experiment cannot go “wrong”. You do an experiment and something will happen or become manifest. It doesn’t matter what happens. It could be in this direction, or that direction. It could be positive or negative. Black or white. Hotter or colder. Faster or slower. Every result is a worthwhile result.

Every experiment is a GOOD experiment.  Except one!

Every experiment is a GOOD experiment. Except one!

It’s exactly the same with us and our skiing. Learning controlled skiing requires experimentation. What it illustrates is “The Kneed to Knowtice”. New words, invented by me – I figure if Dr. Johnson could do it, so can I ! Good, effective experimenting is a skill, and can lead to skilful skiing. Continue reading

Should you be skiing on one leg? Perhaps.

Skiing on one leg?

A further free extract from “Controlled Skiing”, my upcoming book taking a different slant on how to develop your ability to ski in control at all times on all pistes.

On one leg? Not literally perhaps, although it is perfectly possible, as you can see.

David Swedlow demonstrating.

David Swedlow demonstrating.

Elsewhere in the book we have considered what it is makes a ski perform the functions we want it to.  Mostly these functions are either changing direction, or skidding to resist accelerative onward motion.  In all cases this involves tilting the ski and bending the ski. Continue reading

Ski in Control using your mind

Ski in Control using your mind.
braindiagram

This morning my long suffering wife made some smarty-pants comment about my memory being somewhat suspect.  Dammit she’s right.

The ensuing conversation (not a heated debate) raised an interesting issue related to skiing, and how to ski in control.  Why is it, we wondered, that memorising things has never been that easy even when we were young?  And yet once we know how to do something, there is no need to memorise it.  Once you know something, memory is not required.  This can lead to difficulties – if you have practiced “doing turns” sufficiently often for example you will have trapped yourself into a very limited kind of skiing from which escape and further development will be jolly difficult, because “doing turns” is not an appropriate concept. Continue reading